AN ADDRESS DliWVERED BY . Jaies G. Eaisay, M. D., / ^ BEFORE THE YOUNG LADIES OF AT STi^TESVILLE, MAY 29TH, 1863. Dr. Ramsay's Address. A.t the request of the Faculty and pupils of Concord Female Colleg-e, we this week pub- lish Dr, Ramsay's interesting- address, deliv- ered in the chapel of the Institution on the 29th of last May. We were necessarily caused to delay its publication until the present issue, on account of the press of business, but it has lost none of its interest, and will repay pe- rusal.- — ^The Iredell Express, December 3rd, 1863. Ladies and Gentlemen: The circumstance under which we have convened to- da}', renders it eminently proper, if not imperative, that the reflections of the hour should be, mainly, upon the subject of female education. When we remember that the Preacher hath said, ''there is no new thing- under the sun," it mig-ht savor of affectation to say, that I have nothing- new to bring- to your attention and if it should be my province to indulg-e in the repetition of what others may have inculcated, under similar circumstances, 1 shall derive consolation from the reflection, that inspired prophe- cy has also proclaimed, that "precept must be upon precept, and line upon line." Education is one of the most prominent features, as well as the most efficient lever, of civilization. To its meliorating influence we owe, in an eminent deg-ree, our elevation above the brutes which surround us. By it we are literally broug-ht out from our pristine rude- ness, and trained up to beauty, happiness, and usefulness. — Let me here be understood to speak not merely of men- tal, but also, of physical and moral training- — of the com- plete and rythmical developement of the whole being-; which is at once the desig-n and necessity of our nature. — The Creator did not permit man to fall from his first es- tate of innocence and purity, that he mig-ht continue to g-rovel in darkness and misery, else He had never opened a door of escape; nor are the blight and mildew of the fall entirely consonant with man's nature, else he had never soug-ht to emerg-e from their slime and filth. — The reflection, then, is as consolitary as it is rational, that the arm of Omnipotence is always out-stretched to help those eng-aged in toiling up to the elevation of the sons of God. The advance has been slow, but it cannot be doubted that, during- these, six thousand years, the world has made much solid and substantial prog-ress. More than four centuries 4 ag-o, Jack Cade, an Irish adventurer, having- g-ained some advantages in a rebellion against Henry VI of England, is represented by Shakespeare as berating Lord Say, in this style: "Thou hast most traitorously corrupted the youth of the realm: and whereas before our fathers had no other books but the score and tally, thou has caused print- ing- to be used: and contrar}' to the King-, his crown and dig- nity, thou hast built a paper-mill. It will be proved to thy face, that thou hast men about thee, that usually taulk of a noun and a verb; and such abominable words, as no chris- tian ear can endure.'' Such were the sentiments, the great dramatic poet, attributed to one, who aspired to the throne of Eng-land, in the middle of the fifteenth century. Doubt- less much poetic license was used, to convey much truth ; and the sentiments attributed to Cade were not of a perfect in- dex of the ignorance of the more common people of those times. Let us advance two centuries later and contrast, the estimate which the Puritans of New Eng-land, placed upon education, with that of Cade in the times of Henry. I am aware that h is the fashion of the times, to deride and tra- duce the Puritans; but who will not applaud ihe law, which sprang- from their customs and decreed that "none of the brethren shall suffer so much barbarism in their fam- ilies, as not to teach their children and apprentices so much learning- as may enable them perfectly to read the English tongue." In the year one thousand seven hundred and seventy six — more than a century later — our fathers met in conven- tion, at Halifax, in this g-ood Old North State, and framed a State Constitution. They went a step further, than the Puritans of the preceding g-eneration, and as an evidence of their appreciation of the blessings ol education, and as an earnest of their intention to secure the same to their posterity, they decreed: "That a school or schools shall be established by the Leg-islature, for the convenient instruction of youth, with such salaries to the masters, paid by the public, as may en- able them to instruct at low prices, and all useful learn- 5 ing shall be duly encouraged and promoted in one or more universities." The advance here, we see, is from private to public instruction, and is placed beyond a contingency. The arts have contributed, within the last few centuries, most successfully, to the perpetuation of science. The art of printing, the discovery of the mariner's compass, the application of steam to locomotion, and electricity to the transmission of intelligence, have rendered the at- tainments of one age so accessable to another, that know- ledge is, to a great extent, a thing of memory and its ac- quisition a labor of synthesis. Notwithstanding all this, it must be conceded that ignorance, like ^'spiritual wicked- ness," is still abroad in the land, even "in high places." No age can, without a peradventure, secure its own eleva- tion to its successor, nor can the attainments of one gen- eration become those of another, without an effort. Each generation has, substantially, to emerge from the same level, and toil-upwards for itself; and the same is true of every individual. Hence it is that history is certainly repeating itself; and the joys and sorrows, reverses and triumphs of one generation are those of another. Hence it is that the same college at which the mother was in- structed, is preserved for the daughter; and the same truths which were taught the one, are applicable to the other. For this reason, every little girl in my presence, must learn to labor, and labor to learn. Those, then, make a fatal mistake, whether they be parents or children, who suppose that such progress has been attained in the art of teaching, as to preclude the vigorous employment, on their part, of all the energies and appliances which were indespensable in former times. The providence of our fathers, and the facilities of the age have given us educational advantages, surpassing any preceding age or country, if we except, perhaps, the com- mon school system of Prussia, and a few of the universities of the old world. But it is a most remarkable fact that, until within comparatively a recent period, nearly all the educational facilities of the times, have been afforded to males, while the female portion of the human family has 6 been most scantily provided for. It is a melancholy, and at the same time a most sig-nificant fact, that it is only in countries blessed with knowledge, and especially with Christianity, that women have attained to social position, and any elevation above that of practical slavery. In Mo- hammedan countries, even the middle classes of females — who are said to enjoy far more liberty than the higher — are shut up in one end of their houses, and the key of the only door leading to their apartment is held by the hus- band. It is a great privilege to be permitted to go in and out at pleasure. Pigs, dogs, women, and other impure an- imals, are lorbidden, by law, to enter a mosque; and the hour of prayer must not be proclaimed by a female, a mad- man, a drunkard or a decrepit person. Polygamy is the rule with the wealthy Turks; and hundreds of thousands of most beautiful and lovely females are shut up within the walls of the harems — slaves to the sensuality of the Sultan. These female slaves are sold in the slave mar- kets of Constantinople; having been previously bought or impressed in Circassia — a land famed, ever since the days of Sarah, the wife of Abraham, for the beauty of its fe- males. The Persians are said to have been the first to carry their wives and children with them to the field of battle. They do so, they say, that the sight of all that is most dear to them may animate them to fight more valiantly in their defense. And yet every grandee in Persia has his harem of incarcerated women; and the monarch his seraglio — a perfect city in minature — where women, alone, fill all the offices, even to that of chief equerry, and cap- tain of the gate. Notwithstanding thischivalr}^, and boast- ed affection for the sex, the law which requires the testi- mony of four women, when the declaration of two men is sufficient, evinces the true estimate, and real contempt, in which their women are held. '^The Shaster, or Hindoo Bible, forbids a woman to see dancing, hear music, wear jewels, blacken her eye brows, eat dainty food, sit at a window, or view herself in a mir- ror, during the absence ot her husband; and it allows him to divorce her if she has no sons, injures his property. 7 scolds him, quarrels with another, or presumes to eat before he has finished his meal." If the Hindoo women are like many Americans, it is difficult to conceive of a state of self- denial more g-alling- and intolerable than that of never be- ing- permitted to see dancing-, hear music, wear jewels, sit by a window, and view themselves in a mirror except in the presence of their husbands. Were these rules ob- served among us, many of our better halves would grow exceedingly affectionate, and the demand for our life-giv- ing presence would be constant and imperative. No Hin- doo woman is allowed to give evidence in a court of jus- tice. Even the higher classes are forbidden to read or write; the ignorance and superstition of the people inducing- the belief, that these accomplishments would unfit the fe- males for the duties of domestic life, and bring untold mis- fortune upon them. Wives never call their husband by name but always say, ''the master;" and yet, so strong is the natural affection which the great — but to them un- known — God has implanted in the breast of these deluded women, that when permitted to leave the zananah, they frequently accompany their masters to the field of battle, and when wounded, implore their husbands to kill them to avoid falling- into the hands of their enemies. The ancient Kgyptians believed the Nile would not overflow and fertilize the soil, and thus enable them to raise beautiful crops, unless it was appeased by a human sacrifice. Hence, it was their annual custom to select one of their most beautiful maidens, and after decorating- her in the most magnificent manner, to plunge her into the stream, where she perished beneath the waves, and furnished food for their crocodile g-ods. A similar custom is said to have prevailed in Africa upon the Niger. In no country in the world, perhaps, is the condition of women more deplorable than in Africa. In the depart- ments of Dahomey and Ashantee, the women perform all the manual labor^ even to the building of their houses, while the men regale themselves in indolence and ease, looking on while their wives perform these labors, with more com- placency than women look upon their toiling husbands 8 in christian countries. At the death of a King- his wives, and his slaves of both sexes, often to the number of one hun- dred, are put to death, from the superstitious idea that he will need their attendance in another world. Were it not for the fact, that is becoming- fashionable to eulogize England and her stable institutions, I should not allude to the reasons given by some of her male lawg-ivers, for the law which enacts that ^'sons shall be preferred before daug-hters," in the distribution of property. The complacent lawgivers say, ^'the sons shall be preferred," because they are "the worthiest of blood." On the contrary it is affirmed, that women are ca- pable, in law, of serving- in almost all of the offices of the Kingdom of Great Britain. It must not be forgotten, however, that this privilege extends to but a very few of the women — to those only, who are so fortunate as to be descended from the nobility. The great mass of the women of England are in the eye of the law, not only of baser blood, than th«ir noted lords and sisters, but all of them, are bloodless creatures when compared with the lords of creation. In Republican Rome the women inherited equal- ly with the men; and so it is in .Republican America. It is to be hoped that women will study this subject of blood — will enlarge upon the reasons which have satis- fied the male lawgivers of England, that sons are "the worthiest of blood," when compared with daughters — before they conclude to supplant the republican institutions of our fathers, with the monarchical systems, under whose tyranny they groaned; and to escape from which they en- dured untold hardships; and poured out the crimson current of life itself, upon victorious fields of strife and carnage. Such was and such is still the degraded condition of women in Mohammedan and Pagan lands. Cast now the eye abroad over the nations covered with the light of know- ledge, as with a garment, and with the blessings of that Christianity which comes "with healing in his wings," and has elevated women from their low estate and given them husbands that love, defend and cheerish them, sons that rise up and call them blessed, and nations that accord 9 to them the place allotted by heaven — and draw the con- trast. Look at the picture, my female friends, and day by day, at matin and vesper, your hearts will exclaim with Mary of old, "My soul doth mag-nify the Lord; for he hath reg-arded the low estate of his handmaiden, and exalted them of low de^-ree: for he that is mig-hty hath done for me g-reat thing-s; and holy is his name." There is an awakened feeling- throug-hout the civilized world with reg-ard to female education; and we hail this as the harbinger of brighter times for future g-enerations. It must be confessed, however, that even at this day, and in this country, many erroneous ideas and prejudices exist upon this subject. Because woman's physical, and perhaps her mental and moral conformation is not identical with man, she is too often denied their full development: and because the Creator denominated her a help-meet, it has been too g-enerally assumed that her position must be sub- ordinate.— Physiologists inform us that, as a general rule, her brain is a fraction smaller than that of man; and we all know that her frame is more attenuated, delicate and beautiful. The brain of Madam De Stael, however, weig-hed equal to thatot the intellectual giant Byron, who "stooped to touch the loftiest thought." It may well be doubted whether any mental advantage remains with man; because if he excels in one department, woman does in another; if his intellectual faculties are more vigorous, hers are more sprightly; if his power of combination is superior, her im- agination is more vivid, and her sentiments and emotions are far more perfect. Notwithstanding the awakened feeling and progress in the few past years, with regard to her education, she has seldom, if ever, enjoyed the advantages of the lordly sex. Where are woman's universities, and how long and unin- terruptedly has she been permitted to remain at the few schools and colleges, scarcely deserving the name, which have been doled out to her, as a favor, rather than as a right? It will be time enough to decide this question, when she has been permitted to enter the lists, and compete with man upon equal terms 10 A strang-e-atid as we have seen a Hindoo notion—is still prevalent, in some parts^ that education unfits a woman for the duties of her station in life — that it makes her pe- dantic and affected, and causes her to abjure "the orna- ment of a meek and quiet spirit." If this notion is correct, then ignorance is the best civilizer of the human race; and ignorance of the duties of the female, in her station in life, the best qualification for fulfilling them. In the ironical language of Sydney Smith, ''women are delicate and re- fined only because they are ignorant; they manage their household only because they are ignorant; they attend to their children only because they know no better." If women, who have little education, are vain and pedantic it is only because they have never taken large and tranquil- izing droughts from the Pierian spring — a little more knowledge would sober them. Vanity and pedantry are prompted by the supposition, that the diffusion of knowl- edge is not equal and general; and by the presumption that their possessor luxuriates in rare and uncommon at- tainments. No lady is vain because she possesses teeth and hair, two eyes and cheeks, but because it is a fact, eith- er real or imaginary, that her teeth are more pearl -like, her hair more glossy, and her ringlets more beautiful, her eyes more facinating and sparkling, and her cheeks more ruddy and inviting than those of other women. The cure for literary vanity, is to render high intellectual attain- ments more common: pedants and blues will then become extinct, or migrate to more genial climes. It has been said that * 'women have, of course, all ig- norant men for enemies to their instruction, who being bound (as they think) in point of sex, to know more, are not well pleased in point of fact to know less." This accounts at once for the numerous and silly objections which are from time to time raised against female educa tion, and for the imperfect opportunities afforded women for mental improvement. We are not sure that even learned men have not a little jealousy; and it is by no means cer- tain that they would not feel themselves shorn of much of their importance, if compelled to abandon the monopoly 11 of science, and compete upon a common forum, for the wreath of victory, with the weaker sex. Nor is pedantry confined to women or to literary characters and pursuits. Vanity is a common weakness of both sexes, and every pursuit. It is found, as the offspring- of ignorance, every where — the farmer and mechanic, the physician and lawyer, the preach- er and butcher (not to mention the dancing- master,) all have it; and the most ignorant are infested, perhaps, most of all. It was the wisest man who pronounced all thing's "vanity and vexation of spirit;" had he known less, even he might have been proved vain and presumptious; because, "Fools rush in where ang-els fear to tread." The conclusion of the whole matter is, that knowledge is the best cure for conceit and folly. Again: a want of proper appreciation of female educa- tion is evidenced in the eager pursuit of riches, and the worship of Dives to the exclusion of Minerva; and unless more correct ideas get abroad, on this subject, the full development of the female mind cannot be attained, in this countr}^ The mania for riches is furious, so much so, that it subordinates everything else to its service. Even knowl- edge is sought for that it may contribute to wealth. The true path, in the opinion of many, to happiness lies, not through the temple of knowlege, but though the tables of the money changer. It is impossible, as a rule, that property can remain, undiminished, in the same hands, in this country, longer than one generation A father toils and accumulates property, to be divided among his chil- dren, to be again subdivided among theirs; and thus the elevation to riches is scarcely gained, until the cumula- tions of a life time of toil and labor like the stone of Sysephus, roll bounding to the level whence they came. When a richly stored mind comes to be valued more than glittering wealth; when knowledge is esteemed of more value than costly array; and when it is sought after, not only as the lever of power and the key to the coffers of gold, but for its intrinsic worth, as the way and means to happiness and usefulness, then, and then only, may we 12 look for a proper appreciation of female education, in this country. Thus we may look for female schools, colleg-es and universities, where the little miss will learn something- more than affectation and cant; when her time will not be consumed in '^practicing- attitudes" before the glass, and growing- sentimental over billet doux, albums, and novels; and when she will cease to be a thing- of gossamer and tiffany — a nolime-tangere of roug-e and pearl-white — but being- educated for practical life, she will become a prac- tical creature, and fill her true position in the famil}^ and in society. Education is properly divisible into two stages or departments, which are complements of each other. The first is parental; the second academic. The greatest impediment to the advancement of the child in school, is the deficiency, or entire want, of parental discipline and training-. It is scarcely possible to realize the untold evils inflicted upon the world by the improper discharge of pa- rental duty; or to over estimate the blessings of training up children in the way they should g-o. I solemnly believe that the dissolution of the United States, once the pride, glory and strength of America, and the calamities of the present fartricidal war consequent thereon, are eminently referable to this cause. We all know that within the past quarter of a century, perhaps earlier, there has arisen — not only at the North but at the South also — a dashing, flashing, impudent exquisite, called ''Young America." The "young hopeful" was confided, in his earliest year?, to the darkey nurse at the the South, and Irish help, at the North, while his mother was gadding and tattling from house to house, or if perchance at home, lolling on her sofa, in most profound reverie over the last novel; the father, perhaps, in the meantime, discussing mint-juleps and politics in grog shops and taverns, or hybernating at the faro-bank. Every whim and caprice of "mother's dar- ling" had to be gratified. Chains, toys, dogs, darkies and helps, were alike chartised, for his amusement or appease- ment whenever his vindictivness evinced itself in kicks and squalls. Before he had shed his pin-a-fore "the little man" had set up for himself. His nocturnal perambula- 13 lions were begun, and his mother did not know he was out; they were continued and he did dot care whether she knew it or not Raised up thus in contempt of parental law and authority, he proceeded to defy civil and religious laws. The fathers of the republic were old fogies to him; inno- vation was his progress — the Bible and the constitution were obsolete, and his shekinah was "manifest destiny" and 'Hhe higher law." Having nearly the whole race of his contemporaries for accomplices, he operated for the destruction of order, law and government, and finding co- operators both North and South, has, we fear, but too well succeeded. Depend upon it, my friends, children must be governed. Folly is bound up in their hearts, and there are occasions on which the rod must not be spared. Children governed well at home, are obedient at school, and submit to the laws of their countrj^. — When taught habits of industry at home, they will not be idle at their books. When taught to toil with iheir hands, in useful labor, they strive to learn i;i mental effort. Useful labor thus becomes a habit, which brings forth fruit, an hundred fold, upon the great field of life. On the contrary children not governed at home, will not submit lo government at school. The lit- tle girl, for example, who has been indulged in every whim and foolish notion at home, will not only be incor- rigible at school, but the man that takes her for a wife, will find it ''better to dw 11 in the corner of a house-top," than with her ' in a wide house.' Will she be the virtuous woman described by Solomon who openeth her mouth with wisdom, and hath the law of kindness under her tongue? Will her hands hold the distalf, and layeth she her hands to the spindle? Will she rise while it is yet night and give meat to her household and a portion to her maidens? No, she will be and do none of these; but whether married or single, she will, as Paul sa3^s, learn to be idle, wandering about from house to house: and not only idle but a tattler also and a busybody, speaking thin.s which she ought not. A profound truth is poetically expressed when we sav, 14 " 'Tis education forms the common mind, Just as the twig- is bent the tree's inclined." First impressions are the most important, because the most lasting-. — There must be a reform in family education. To this end, as parents, we must learn first to g-overn our- selves; and second, to set a proper example before our children. No one who cannot g-overn himself is fit to g-overn others: and the same is true with a parent who teaches one action and practices another. These thing's require much thought and self-denial— constant vig-ilance and effort, and, when properly performed, much prayer for g-uidance and direction. But all this, and much more, must be submitted to and endured, or the end cannot be attained. Substitutions may answer in the warfare of nations, but not in the warfare of life. The school and academy only continue and inforce that instruction and mental dir.cipline, which shculd beg-in at home. Napoleon, anxious, and at a loss what to do for the education of the French people, inquired of a lady what the youth of the nation needed in this respect, and her laconic reply was, "mothers." If France had had the rig-ht sort of mothers, the "reign of terror" would not have entitled her to the appellation of "the maniac of the nations." Let us take warning. 'Is there a mother present, to da}-, who has neglected personal effort, and is relying upon this or any other institution of learning, ur upon any combination of fortuitous circumstances, for the formation of virtuous hab its in her daughter; she may find, when too late that she has fatally erred. Is there a patriot here who has neglected family government, and is relying upon schools and the general diffusion of knowledge to promote order and per- petuate good government; he will permit me to tell him, that he is attempting- to purify the streams which flow from a corrupt fountain. No, let us abide by the fact, that it is maternal influence — exerted for the most part in the quietude of home- — which must be the great agent in the hands of God, in bringing back our guilty race to duty and to happiness. ''^ *.->ee The Mother at Home, pag-e 149. 15 It may be laid down as an axiom, that education should be commensurate with the influence for g-ood which its recipient is capable of exerting-. —Judg-ed by the test, fe- male education should be most thorough and complete. It is true that at woman's bidding- Adam ate the fruit "Of that forbidden tree whose mortal taste Brong-ht death into the world and all our wo." At her behest also, the head of John, the Baptist was ex- hibited in a charg-er. The beauty of the wayward Helen, not only kept the ancient world in arms for ten long- years, but was the cause, also, of ^'woes unnumbered" to Greece and Troy. Mark Anthony, and the mig-hty Caesar kneeled in turn, before the beautii'ul but proflig-ate Cleopatra, and forg-ot to conquer while entang-led in the meshes of love. But it were an ungracious task to continue this narrative of evil influence and crime. Let us turn to the brig-ht side of the picture. The celebrated traveller Mung-o Park bears this testimony to the g-oodness and kindness of woman. — 'In all my wandering-s says he, ''I found women uniformly kind and compassionate, and I can truly say as my predecessor, Mr. Ledg-ard, has said before me: 'To a w^oman I never addressed myself in the languag-e of decency and friendship without receiving- a decent and friendly answer. If I was hungry or thirsty, wet or sick, they did not hesitate, like the men, to perform a generous action. In so free and so kind a manner did they contribute to my relief, that if I was dry, I drank the sweetest draught, and if hung-ry, I ate the coarsest morsal with double relish.' " What would the world be without the kind iind beneficient influence of woman? The dew of Hermon fell not more g-cntly upon the mountains of Zion, than her g-entle looks and benig-nant smiles — yea her crystal tears fall with life- giving- power and gentle balm upon the efforts of virtuous, and even wayward man, while traveling- throug-h this vale of tears. With angelic affection she cradles our infancy upon her bosom; and when sickness comes she bathes the aching- brow, and in the stillness of the long- nig-ht, when man and nature rest, her watching- eye refuses to slumber. 16 and star by star fades away, she, solitary and alone, awaits the dawning- lig-ht. When in answer to her prayers our diseases are rebuked, no heart turns more devoutfully thank- ful to onr God; and when the fresh earth shall cover our mortal bodies, no tears will fall — no heart will bleed — like hers: and no hand but her's will plant the ever living- green upon our g-raves — the sad but true emblem of her never dying- affection. '•There is none In all this cold and hollow world, no fount Of deep, strong-, deathless love, save that within A mother's heart." No nation, on the tide of time, has g-rown g-reat and strong-, when women were not strong- and g"reat, honorable and honored. Their g-reatness and streng-th may not have been visible, but must have been felt — may not have been accorded, but surely existed. — x\mong- the Hebrew women, Sarah was a faithful wife, Jochebea, a faithful mother Meriam a prophetess, whose visit to the Red Sea, and whose song- of praise to that God who had ^'triumphed g-loriousl}', and thrown the horse and his rider into ihe sea'' as she struck the loud sounding- timbrel — inspired the courage, elevated the aspirations and fixed the faith of the chosen people. When we turn to the republics of Rome and Greece we find that, althoug-h, a Sempronamig-ht dance "with more grace and art than became a virtuous woman," yet there were the chaste Lucreta, the innocent Virgilla and the patriotic Vetruria. The Grecian mother could send forth her sons to battle with the injunction to return, with their shields or upon them — to conquer or die. It is said that the gifted and eloquent Pericles was indebted to the beautiful and accomplished Aspasia, for much of his success in life. Plato asserts that this most extraordinary woman was the preceptress of Socrates, and composed the celebrated funeral oi"ation, which Pericles delivered upon those who fell in the Peloponessian war, which was the crowning" effort of his oratory and has immortalized his name. We cannot hush the voice of war, but we can calm, for a moment, the tumults of passion. , Let us look back 17 upon the broad land of Washing-ton. We know what it was — strong", great and g-lorious; but we know not — no, the wisest seer among- us knows not — what it shall be. This we know of the sacred past; The United States were not g-reat and mighty without the agency of great and good women. There was no man like unto the father of his country. Washington was a good and great man, be- cause he had a good and laithful mother. That mother once replied to the encomiems, which the Marquis de La Fayette, lavished upon her son, 'T am not surprised at what George has done, for he was always a good boy." Such was the modesty and such too was the faith of the mother of Washington — truly ^^a good tree bringeth forth good fruit." Randolph, although a genius of transcendent ability, was neither so great nor so good a man as Washington; but he has told us that he was saved from French infidelity only by the recollection of the time, when his sainted mother took his little hands in hers, and causing him to bow at her knee, to pray "Our Father which art in heaven." "O Mother, sweetest name on earth, We lisp it on the knee — And idolize its sacred worth, In manhood's ministry. And if I e'er in heaven appear — A mother's holy prayer, A mother's hand and g-entle tear. That pointed to a Soviour here Shall lead the wanderer there." Young Ladies: I have, at detached intervals and at great inconvenience, gotten together these somewhat des- ultory remarks. It has been my aim, "To pour the tresh instruction o'er the mind To breathe the enlivening- spirit, and to fix The generous purpose in the g-lowing breast." If I have only imperfecly succeeded, I shall be most ampl}^ repaid. And now permit me to ask you, why you are here? Why was this edifice erected, and this college instituted at such a cost of money, and amid so many prayers? Your 18 fathers and brothers are, perhaps, far away upon fields of strife and blood; and your mothers and sisters toiling- and economizing- at home while you are placed here. You are not here that 3'ou may idle your time away in listless folly, and indulge your fancy and pride in dress and pleas- ure. You are not placed here, alone "To guide the pencil, tni-n the tuneful page," and cull the flowers only from the g-arden of knowledg-e. No! no!! my young- friends, think me not unkind when I tell you, that although you are young- now, and your hearts light and gay, this may not, wiM not, always be the case. May a long life of happiness, and a g-reen old ag-e be 3^ours; but remember that care and sorrows will come, and s'orms of adversity may cross your path. It is to prepare for the journey of life that 3^ou are placed here. Learn to labor, and labor tc learn. Store your minds with useful know- ledge. Submit to the regulations of your teachers, they may appear arbitrary and useless, but the self denial ac- quired thereby, will be useful under far greater trials and difficulties, in after life. Wrap up, clothe yourselves while here — the storms of life will surely overtake you. Keep your young- hearts pure; and let nothing that is impure and unholy obtrude itself upon your thoughts. Do these things and beauty and loveliness will attend your foot- steps, happiness will wreathe its g-arlands around your brow, earth will be your paradise and heaven ycur home. Permit me, in conclusion, my friends, to indulg-e in a few remarks, which seem to be called for by the exigencies of the times. Two years ago, this was a happy land, and peace and prosperity were within our borders. The locomotive ca- reered along its iron track, in sportive majesty, bearing- along the gay and lovely among- men and women; and the copious products of the workshot and farm, in exchang-e for the rich merchandise of foreig-n nations. The song- of the merry boatman re echoed from the adjacent hills as his richly freighted vessel rode upon the gentle bosom of our rivers. The whistle of the plough-boy and the song- of the maiden fell sweetly upon the ear of tlie good mother 19 and the venerable father, as they reclined at ease, beneath the shade and shelter of their peaceful home. — But the scene has chang-ed. The Union of the States, that Washing-ton and Webster regarded as inseparable from liberty, is rent asunder, red armed war stalks through the land, and '^carnage has sat down to her repast." The plough-boy has left the half-ploughed field, and clothed in martial panoply, hastened away to the tented field: and the maiden's merry song is subdued into the funeral dirge. At morning-, noon, and night, the father s and mother's eyes rest upon the vacant seats of their sons, and like Jacob of old, the partriarch exclaims, '^Joseph is not, and Simeon is not, and ye will take Benjamin away — all thing-s are against me.'' Wars are afflictions which spring not from the g-round. They are the scourge of the Almingty upon the haughty nations that trample under foot His blessings — disregarded his teachings and will have none of His reproof. As a na- tion we haveforgotten the admonitions of our fathers. They founded the Republic upon the virtue and intelligence of the people, and warned us that to preserve its blessings, the most uitiring efforts should be made, not only to cultivate the head, but also to purify the heart. We have paid but lit- tle attention to their precepts. The mind has indeed, been cultivated, but the heart has been too much neglected, and virtue has been crucified, while the superscription has been in Greek and Latin and Hebrew. A fatality seized upon us. We fondly believed that the Union was to be perpet- ual. We read, indeed, in history that Babylon the great had fallen. That Ur of the Chaldeas was no more. That "Thebes with her hundred gates," and the empire of the Herods had returned to dust and nothingness. We knew that the empire o£ the Caesar's and Alexander's arose and flourished, but decayed and fell — but stricken with judicial blindness, and without stopping to interrogate history, or to ponder upon its teachings, we fondly believed our cities would rise and our harvests would wave, and peace and plenty, quiet and concord would bless 'Hhe land of the free and the home of the brave," until the mighty God should 20 come, to reap the harvest of the living and the dead. Our chart and compass were thrown aside. We have escaped the whirlpool, but have been wrecked upon the rock. Let us hope that it is not too late to take warning-. Let us see to it that we cherish the spirit of liberty — ra- tional, reg-ulated Constitutional Liberty, at the leaven of our hearts: and while our armies are striving- upon the en- sang-uined field for national independence, let us see to it that our individual liberties are safe Let us dispel our delusions and study history anew. The times are again upon us that try men's souls. The work before us is noth- ing- less than a new solution of the problem of self-g-overn- ment, and a rebuilding- of the temple of liberty. Let us cease to worship men, or the work of men's hands, Unions or Confederacies, Empires or Monarchies; but let us return to the worship ot the Lord our God, let us bow alone to truth. I call upon the mothers in Israel, upon ^^both the young- men and maidens; old men and children" to bow to truth alone — truth social, truth political, truth eternal. Let light shine! Be afraid of nothing- but error. Must any- thing- be kept in darkness? it is evil, show it. — Let others do as they may, but as for me, with the help of God, I henceforth say to truth, as did Ruth to Naomi: — "Entreat me not to leave thee, or to return from following- after thee; for whither thou g-oest I will g"o; and where thou lodg-est I will lodg-e: th}^ people shall be my people, and thy God my God."